Alaska Bodge Answers
Posted by Jeff Id on December 12, 2009
Well, I’d like to thank Dr. Keen for stopping by and explaining some of our questions. This thread which pertains to the Alaska temperature record.
Those few Alaska graphs can sure stir up a lot of conversation! I posted them on ICECAP as an illustration of how original station data can differ from “processed” or “value added” data released by various agencies.
For those who wonder what the original data came from, I went straight to the source, of course, namely NCDC collection of co-op and NWS station observations at:
You, too, can download the same data, but it might cost you.
The nine stations are the only long-term ones in the GHCN grid box that’s shown; I have no idea what area the IPCC used. Seems like the IPCC may not know either.
As for my secret code, you can dowload that too – just open Excel and find the AVERAGE, STDEV, COUNT, and SUM funcions. That’s as fancy as my codes got. I have no fudge factors, except for arithmetic offsets between overlapping stations that were used to make combined time series. Some time series were normalized (departure divided by standard deviation), and some weren’t. The full report is a 70 or so page tech report for the National Park Service. A nice summary of the work (and the purpose of the study) was published by NPS at:
The lesson I learned from this is that one should use original source data (like NCDC co-op data) rather than processed, or possibly processed (sometimes you don’t know) data from sources like USHCN, GHCN, GISS (not an issue with CRU, since they won’t release it).
I haven’t visited this blog before, and although it looks pretty good, I probably won’t be checking back to reply very often. Nothing wrong, mind you, it’s just a matter of available time.
Meanwhile, I need to go read my official NWS issue MMTS max-min thermometer now – I’m the co-op observer for Coal Creek Canyon, Colorado, elevation 8950 feet. Check it out – we get some cool numbers here. Such as, every one of the past five years has been colder than the coldest of the previous five years.
cheers, Richard Keen
Climate analyst and data maker (observer)